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Choosing Wise Leaders

7 questions to measure a candidate's most important qualification.

Qualified leaders are hard to find. But the search becomes even more difficult when we look for the wrong qualifications. Churches invariably seek candidates who are godly and of good reputation. Does the candidate's calling match the position? Is he or she passionate, devoted, gifted? Good questions, good qualities, but the most important qualification is often overlooked.

At Elmbrook Church, our council selects new elders when a position is vacated. For years, I have advised the council with one plea. "Please, oh please, find candidates who are wise." Passion and vision are important traits, but wisdom points vision in the right direction and keeps passion pushing in the proper places.

Consider this scenario: The pastor announces, "It is my belief that we should double our attendance in the next two years and add 100 new small groups in the next 100 days."

The board sits silent and stunned. No one asks, "Where did you get those numbers? Why 100 in 100?"

The pastor's discernment isn't examined. ...

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